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Tuesday, 30 June 2015

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Evidence points to success of Barrow pilot nightlife safety scheme

A PILOT scheme designed to make Barrow’s main nightlife strip safer is proving a success.

The Evening Mail joined Barrow police in the early hours of Saturday morning to observe how officers operate in and around Cavendish Street, where the vast majority of revellers end up on Friday and Saturday nights.

Since mid-April, Cavendish Street has been closed to traffic from the junction with Dalkeith Street, along with the surrounding backstreets. Under the terms of the six-month trial, sanctioned by councillors, the closure applies from 9pm until 5am on weekends.

Based on Saturday’s evidence, it has removed the growing risk that revellers could suffer serious injuries as a result of potential collisions with taxis or other cars. Police and publicans in Cavendish Street believe there has been a marked improvement.

Zelina Jones, manager of Manhattans, Broadway and Hollywood Rock Cafe,said: “ It’s been a lot easier to manage. The doormen find it easier. You can never predict whether there would’ve been an accident or not but there was a lot of traffic and people don’t pay the same attention when they’ve had a drink and they’re on their phones. It’s definitely made it a safer environment.”

Mike Fallon, owner and landlord of Theatre Bar, said: “It’s been a massive improvement. Personally, I think closing it at 10.30pm would be ample, to allow people to leave the restaurants like Salvanas. But after that time it’s a godsend, because you don’t see anybody nearly getting run over like you used to. That was the worry because there were a couple of near-misses.”

The trial comes up for review in November. Sergeant John McIntosh said: “It’s created a safer environment for people to enjoy themselves in, with it being less chaotic. In all honesty, I don’t think it can go back to how it was.”

Cavendish Street became the focal point for Barrow’s nightlife following the closure of most Cornwallis Street clubs and Yates’s, and the opening of Manhattans.

Sgt McIntosh said: “Obviously, it was a change in dynamic which meant we’ve had to alter our tactics when policing the nighttime economy. But it’s been a case of learn, develop and react accordingly. This night was relatively well behaved but there is disorder and what the shift to Cavendish Street has done is move that disorder into one location, as opposed to several.”

Have your say

.... Barrow is now a rubbish town for a night out, I mean its never been fantastic, but given the demise of cornwallis street, the selandia, and even Yates's, Barrow night life has no doubt experienced a demise in the number of folks venturing into town, which will also reduce the risk of fights and accidents, from how it used to be, I myself am quite happy to spend my friday and saturday nights in Ulverston, a much nicer place to drink, that the star wars bars of barrow (theatre bar, cross keys and the barrow arms)

Posted by the flem on 13 August 2014 at 11:46

Yahda yahda yahda, these results are to early to call as yet, time will tell, this is just another Idea to help us think, we are safe in the town, where as in reality even during the day the towns streets are not even safe ? It would be so nice to hear the real statistic's not made up ones, only then can we make up our own minds instead of all this spin !

Posted by Watching! on 12 August 2014 at 19:18

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